Inspiring Dreamer – Neetal Jain – Beating the ADHD Stigma

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If we would not accept them, the world never would!

If you want to see the sunshine, weather the storm.

Neetal Jain, a mother of 2 boys. A stay-at-home-mom, juggling time with parenting 2 brats, new found love of blogging and fulfilling duties in a family of 12members. This is the journey of her elder son Yuvaan and her through ADHD and how they overcame the social stigma of neural disorders and accepting them before anything else. So, here’s her story in her words.

 

There are few things you can learn only during the storm!
I thought I was completely prepared for the worst when Yuv was to be born. We had a very turbulent pregnancy and I thought the worse is over and my miracle baby is meant to be born. (Yes, ‘Miracle’ my pregnancy was not an easy one. Maybe this will need another post altogether)
Yuvaan was born and like any parent, we were taking great care of him and going through regular development assessment with the doctors.
Jump to 2 years forward,  just when we thought everything is going well. We noticed he was not responding to his name yet, neither he was talking, uttering any word other than ‘amma’. We went to his development and growth specialist and she suggested we go to a therapist for she had doubts about him being on the Autism Spectrum.
Quickly, we took an appointment and met the suggested therapist for an assessment. I had known about autism and did not want to wait anymore as I got worried by then.
The therapist asked me zillions of questions. Like, does he respond to his name? Can he sit at one place for more than 5mins? Does he flap his hands in excitement or restlessness? Does he have eye contact when you talk to him? Can he play with toys on his own? Does he play in the sand and likes to get dirty? Does he cooperate while cutting nails and hair?
Most of the answers were ‘No’ and we got more anxious. Then, later she confirms that he does not show signs of autism (sigh of relief) but (here goes the bomb!) he does have all the symptoms of ADHD.
What is ADHD?
Attention Deficiency Hyperactive Disorder, as the name suggests, is a medical condition. It affects the ability to pay attention, sit still and self-control. A child may be, one, two or all 3, inattentive, hyperactive or impulsive. Yuv was inattentive and hyperactive. We were told that luckily we came to know about his condition quite early and it can be improved faster.
The next hurdle was to make our close family members understand his condition as they did not quite agree to it and said all this was for the doctors to mint money and you are just being overprotective parents.
The society did not understand that there is a condition like this too. They labeled him a very naughty child who is spoilt by his parents. Wherever we went, there were eyes labeling me as a failed mother who couldn’t teach her son manners. His restlessness were labelled as temper tantrums. His inability to talk, to interact made him more hyperactive in public. It was getting worse.
 I was not yet coming to terms that my son would ever be having such problem. But then, my husband said even if it’s not a condition, let’s start the therapy. Better start now than regretting later as why did not go early. Along with ADHD, he is also a Speech Delay child and I went about both together. It was quite challenging as he couldn’t reciprocate anything back and it took around 9 months to see any kind of difference.
More than the therapy, it was my role which mattered. I did the home programs with him. Spent more and more time in the evenings. Every afternoon I would be preparing for activities which would improve his sitting tolerance.
His play school was quite cooperative but next hurdle was getting him in a regular school. Almost all the schools rejected his application as he has Speech Delay and low sitting tolerance. By now I knew he was not fit for a big banner school and we got him in a school where he would not be sidelined but made him important.
They said this cannot be cured. But my son after 2 years is 95% cured from his disorder. He has been accepted well in his school and the soceity and I have always been open about his condition.
His recent assessment had an impression that he is a sharp memory child who picks up methods, lessons and tricks in one go. He has perfected his fine and gross motor skills. His Speech has improved and needs fine tuning.
We have stopped his therapy completely but I still homeschool him as we enjoy doing them. This condition has bond us more and made me spend more time with him. I take pride in my son!
I want to say to the parents – please do not shy away or cry over any disorder or condition your child has. If you do not accept him/her, the world will NEVER do!
Remember, if you want to see sunshine, weather the storm!

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